Let The Buffalo Sabres Season Begin

Photo Credit: Sabres.com

Photo Credit: Sabres.com

I offer up an analogy for this upcoming season.  The Buffalo Sabres were downright awful at times during their initial season, while during the end of October into the first week of November of that year the Sabers were getting the snot kicked outta them by virtually everyone. Back to back games out west against the Canucks and Golden Seals where we lost 7-2 and 6-1 respectively. Finishing up the west coast tour with two more losses, being out-scored 8-3, we limped back East into Montreal who had shut us out earlier in the season at home 3-0. Which was part of back to back 3-0 shut-out losses to Montreal and New York that we also had to endure. And as you cannot imagine, our worst loss to date happens, an embarrassing 11-2 loss in Montreal, in front of almost 17,000 fans, in what was the sixth game of a seven game losing streak. But the next three games are a three game home-stand where the Sabres have a decent 1-1-1 stretch which makes hockey in Buffalo a little brighter. Then the Sabres were off to Toronto to take on Coach Imlach’s old team, for the first time and were probably feeling good about their chances for a good showing.

Photo Credit: Sabres.com

Photo Credit: Sabres.com

The Sabres were scheduled to play Toronto six times that season, before this game they did not know of course, that they only would win once out of the season series. If you would have told me before that game that the Sabres would win by five goals, you would have been looking at one suspicious looking nine year old because I would have thought you were making fun of me for cheering for the Sabres. Buffalo had not scored five goals yet to date that year but twice they scored 4 goals against a barely able to play .500 Detroit team and just a few games better expansion California organization. But wouldn’t you know it, we up and beat a division foe, an old school cup winner just a few years back, incredible as it may seem, after being out-shot 46 to 32, we win 7-2. The Sabres end up scoring seven goals twice more that season for a total of three times racking up seven goals in a game, at home versus the Wings we beat them 7-4, and at the Garden to dump the mighty Bruins, 7-5. It is just as possible we could have scored seven goals against say the Minnesota North Stars or California Golden Seals, but we didn’t, we beat two teams which by no stretch of the imagination should have lost to a first year expansion team by getting tagged for seven goals.

As a Sabre fan I realize this upcoming season is probably not going to be a playoff year, but unlike the 70-71 campaign this season we get to see a better quality assemblage of talent, a more solid foundation from front office on down, and possibly another high lottery pick. So I let Sabre history assure me of possible victories for the ages, ones to be proud of and talked about, even if the overall win column does not reflect positively for the entire season.